Our classic northern Thailand cycle tour
A great adventure from the vibrant city of Bangkok, through the landscapes of Thailand's earliest kingdoms, over rolling hills, ending in the cultural hub of the north. This bike tour runs Bangkok to Chiang Mai.
Please Note - Listed tour dates follow our classic route - New departure dates now follow our updated 'Kingdoms of the North' 7 day itinerary.
This is the best way to discover Thailand's lower north.
Start off with a bike tour through the ancient kingdoms of Siam for a firm foundation in the country’s early history. Pass beside Thailand's tallest mountains, visiting villages and the walled city of Lumphun.
With cheering villagers urging you on, you will discover a great deal about this exciting country, topping it all off with a tour around Chiang Mai.
This is one of those bike tours that will leave you satisfied, having travelled from one great city to another on the backroads and byways and gained insights you would only find on two wheels.
Peak Season Surcharge
For tours commencing from Dec 18 to Jan 4 there is a peak season surcharge of 5% on the price of this tour due to hotel rate increases at this time of year.
8 days duration
444 km distance
Trip Features & Tour Inclusions
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Quality, well maintained Merida mountain bikes in a full range of sizes are included in your tour, fitted with hydraulic disc brakes, hybrid tyres for touring. Handlebar bags for your personal possessions and a reusable sports bottle are also provided.
The hotels we use are a great, and sometimes unexpected, part of this tour. In the larger cities and established tourist centres we use stylish and supremely comfortable hotels and resorts, while in the smaller and more out of the way areas we stay in the best available accommodation, which is often simple yet always well run, clean and comes with air-conditioning and a private bathroom.
On the first night of your tour you will be lulled to sleep on the overnight sleeper train from Bangkok. Thai trains are comfortable and spacious and a fun way to cover long distances.
An experienced English speaking, local leader will host you on this trip who is well spoken, very well informed, and charming. Our leaders are often cited as being the main highlight of the tour. We use local leaders who have a passion for their country and are always well informed on topics ranging from history, politics, cuisine and importantly local customs and cultures. Our leaders will take pride in introducing you to every aspect of their country and will help you to connect with the villagers you meet along the way.
For groups of 6+ people a bike mechanic will join the group. Whilst not a master of linguistics, our technical team always make an effort to form a bond with the group and provide not just mechanical support, but additional encouragement to those who may find themselves at the back of the group. Our drivers support the group by ensuring that the freshest fruit and tastiest snacks are picked up along the way.
An air conditioned backup support vehicle is always available in case you want a break from riding, and to carry your luggage.
Thai food is internationally famous, and for good reason. This trip is as much about food as riding with all the best of Thai food provided throughout the trip. Included meals are listed in the day by day itinerary, and drinking water is always included with meals. Any soft or alcoholic drinks are not included and will be at your own expense.
Energy bars and local snacks are provided to keep your energy levels up for the riding, and clean water and electrolyte drinks are always available to keep you well hydrated.
Take It Home
A beautiful souvenir Grasshopper cycling jersey is yours to wear and take home. We also provide a Grasshopper drink bottle as an extra memento.
2 to 10
This tour is guaranteed for a minimum of just 2 travellers. And we limit the group size to only 10 travellers so that you get all the attention you want in an intimate group.
There is no surcharge for single travellers - we will match you with another same sex single traveller. If you want a single room there is a an optional upgrade that you can book.
This tour is 100% operated by Grasshopper Adventures. The guides are our full time employees, the hotels booked by our local office staff, and the bikes are part of our fleet of over 300 bikes. We are not outsourcing any element of this tour so you can be assured of 100% Grasshopper quality.
for Kingdoms of the North
Arrival in Bangkok & Overnight Train
We will meet in the late afternoon at a hotel near Bangkok's main railway station. If you are flying in, we will gladly have you picked up from the airport. The sleeper train is still a viable alternative for long distance travel in Thailand. It is well run, relatively punctual and a really pleasant way to travel. We have dinner before boarding the train and as we leave the metropolis of Bangkok, the rocking motion will almost certainly send you into an early sleep. Meals: D
Cycle to Si Satchanalai
The train arrives early in Uttaradit, so we make use of some rooms at a guesthouse to shower and change into cycling gear and then have a great local breakfast before heading off on the bikes. As we leave town, we find Wat Phrathat Thung Yang, an ancient temple that is still in use today, with an unusual Buddha image. We are then out in the countryside, meandering through sugar fields and orchards over fairly flat terrain. We reach the small town of Si Satchanalai in the early afternoon and have an afternoon to explore this small town and relax. Meals: BLD
Cycle to Sukhothai
This morning we will ride along country roads next to the Yom River visiting artisans who are weaving gold into cloth and creating various pieces of pottery, before we ride through the Si Chanalai Historical Park. This evening we settle in our hotel outside the city gate of Thailand's first capital, Sukhothai. Meals: BLD
Explore Sukhothai & Cycle to Phra Ruang Hot Springs
Today is the first opportunity to stretch out and get some distance behind us. We start off with a gentle pedal through the Sukhothai Historical Park visiting the scattered ruins of this ancient city. We then ride south along the base of a mountain to a temple in the Ramkhamhaeng National Park before finishing off a great ride with a relaxing soak in hot springs. At the end of the day we transfer back to Sukhothai. Meals: BLD
Transfer & Cycle to Tha Duea. Transfer to Chom Thong
Following a 1.5 hour transfer, today's ride brings us into hill country with lots of easy ups and downs, amidst some twists and turns. The journey is peppered with charming hilltop temples and stupas - the most impressive of these being Wat Prathat Huai Thom.. At the end of the day's cycling we transfer 1 hour to Chom Thong. Meals: BLD
Cycle to Lumphun
With just over 50km to ride today, you can look forward to an easy ride along the Ping River. Excited local people will greet you as you ride through forests and past orchards. Arriving in Lumphun in the late afternoon, you will have a chance to relax and explore this little town. Meals: BLD
Cycle to Chiang Mai
IIn the morning we pedal to the old town for a local breakfast. Riding out of town first along tree-lined roads, then winding along irrigation canals and across paddy fields, you will eventually arrive in the artisan village of Ban Tawai. The next stop will be a bee keeping training centre where you can learn about the different kinds of bees in Thailand and their life cycles. After a ride around the Royal Flora Botanical Gardens, cycle into Chiang Mai to finish at the serene forest temple of Wat Umong. Meals: BLD
Conclusion of Tour in Chiang Mai
The bike tour concludes after breakfast today. Our team including your leader will be more than happy to assist you in confirming any onward travel plans. Should you need to reach the airport, our van will be waiting for you. Meals: B
What's the Riding Like?
Some rolling hills
6 days riding
This bike tour is a mixture of flat terrain with a few days of rolling hills. Most of the trip is on rural back roads and occasionally on dirt roads and highways. This ride is achievable by anyone who can ride a bike for the distances involved (and if not just jump in the air conditioned support vehicle for a rest). We take a slow and relaxed pace so this trip is well suited to fit riders looking for a relaxing ride or those new to bike touring who are looking to find out what it's all about.
Coolest time: Nov-Feb
Wettest time: Jun-Oct
Dec-Jan & Jul-Aug
Central, North & Northeast Thailand
This region of Thailand has three seasons: 'the cool', 'the hot' and 'the wet'. November to February is cool and dry (sometimes even chilly in the far north), with temperatures starting to rise in March to reach a peak in late April and May. The onset of the rains, in late May, helps to bring temperatures down, with showers being generally heavy but short.
While without doubt the best riding conditions are during the coolest part of the year (December & January), Thailand is at its most beautiful for bike touring at the height of the rains (July & August) when the fields are a vibrant emerald green and the rice paddies full of water.
What our guests tell us...
Just a selection of our great reviews!
A challenging and rewarding adventure through Thailand.
One of the best holidays I've ever had.
Fantastic memorable trip - excellent experience, great guides, amazing cycling. The best and [most] memorable cycling holiday I've been on so far (if not the best holiday!) It went beyond expectations.
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